Have You Been Charged with a Drug Crime in Metro Detroit & Don’t Know What to Do?
The Ultimate Guide to Defeating a Drug Crimes Charge in Metro Detroit.
Drug crimes are prosecuted vigorously in Michigan, and conviction usually carries severe penalties. If you have been arrested or charged with a drug crime in the Detroit area, time is likely not on your side. You need to contact a skilled Detroit drug crimes attorney immediately to increase your chances of a positive outcome.
Drug crimes are charged as either a misdemeanor or felony offense. However, while misdemeanors are generally considered less serious offenses, they can still result in serious consequences, including fines and jail time, as well as a loss of driver’s license.
Whether you were charged with a misdemeanor or felony at the state level, it is critical that you have a capable Criminal Defense attorney aggressively fighting to secure your freedom.
Contact the criminal defense attorneys at The Bennett Law Firm, PLC for strong, compassionate criminal defense.
Our firm offers a vigorous and effective legal representation. We are well aware of the potentially life-altering consequences of a drug crime conviction. This is why we are committed to fighting aggressively on our clients’ behalf from arrest to trial.
Michigan controlled substances Schedules I, II, III, IV & V
Michigan has a reputation for being one of the toughest on drug-related offenses. The laws generally impose strict punishment on persons found in violation. This means if you are facing drug charges in Michigan, you may be in for some rough treatment.
Most of the drugs that would be considered illegal on the streets, and even a few that might surprise you, generally fall within the category of controlled substances. These substances are contained in a Schedule under Michigan law, the same as the law in most US states.
Michigan organizes controlled substances into schedules to help with prosecution and sentencing. Controlled substances under Michigan law are generally classified into five schedules.
They are as follows:
- Schedule I substances include drugs that have a high potential for abuse and serve no legitimate medical purpose. They include LSD, heroin, ecstacy, peyote, GHB (date rape drug).
- Schedule II substances are those that have a high potential for abuse and addiction, but also have an approved medical use in the US. They include cocaine, opium, morphine, oxycodone, hydrocodone and methamphetamines.
- Schedule III substances have a lover risk of dependency than the previous substances. They still have moderate risk though, even if they have accepted medical uses. They include ketamine, morphine and hydrocodone with aspirin or acetaminophen.
- Schedule IV substances have a low risk of abuse and limited addictive tendencies. They include valium, rohypnol and Xanax.
- Schedule V substances have a very low risk of abuse and can generally be obtained over the counter. Many still have a potential for abuse though. They include cough syrups with codeine and cold medicine with ephedrine.
Usually, the consequences of a conviction will depend on what schedule drugs are involved in the charge and how much you had on you. When you contact our criminal defense firm, we will immediately work on ascertaining the schedule drugs involved in your charge and options for your defense based on the circumstances.
Michigan Drug Laws
Most of the drug crimes that may be charged in Michigan involve either possession, manufacturing or distribution. There are separate statutes under Michigan laws that govern possession, manufacturing, and distribution of controlled substances.
- Drug possession laws: The majority of drug crimes in Michigan are charged under the possession laws. These laws make it illegal for any person to knowingly or intentionally possess a controlled substance in prohibited quantities.
Under the laws, even possession of a prescription form is illegal. Either the substance or the form must have been obtained under a valid prescription or order of a medical practitioner in the course of their practice.
- Drug manufacturing/cultivation laws: Michigan prohibits the manufacturing of controlled substances. It also prohibits their possession with intent to deliver, create or manufacture them. The law applies to various controlled substances including methamphetamines, heroin, prescription drugs, and even counterfeit prescription drugs.
- Distribution laws: These laws also apply to trafficking, which is essentially distribution but at a more organized level. Importantly, a person charged with trafficking may be prosecuted under state law, federal law or even both. For more severe charges, the DEA and FBI may get involved, depending on the size and scope of the alleged organization.
- Marijuana cultivation, distribution, and possession: In certain circumstances, the sale, cultivation or possession of marijuana may be a crime in Michigan. While the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act (MRTMA) makes some marijuana sale to adults 21 and above legal, there are legal parameters. There may be fines for using marijuana in public and the law also limits the amount of marijuana that can be grown or purchased. Adults can generally possess up to 10 ounces and cultivate up to 12 plants for personal use.
- Federal drug laws: The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) 1970 regulates much of federal drug laws. The CSA regulates the manufacture and distribution of controlled substances including hallucinogens, narcotics, depressants, and stimulants. Depending on the schedule of the drugs, possession, manufacture or sale may be visited with harsh punishments. Generally, federal offenses carry stricter penalties and are more vigorously prosecuted than state offenses.
If you are being charged under any one of these laws, you could be facing considerable fines and lengthy jail time. Defense Attorney Samuel Bennett has the skills and knowledge to help you tackle your drug charges. Reach out to The Bennett Law Firm, PLC immediately to get yourself ahead of the prosecution.
Types of drug charges you could face in Michigan
Facing a drug charge, such a heroin or meth possession in Metro Detroit & across the state can be serious and you need an experienced defense legal team to represent you. The Bennett Law Firm, PLC has helped many residents in the Metro Detroit Area defend against serious drug crimes charges, with stellar results.
We represent Michigan clients accused of various state and federal drug crimes including the following:
- Heroin possession with intent to sell or deliver
- Ecstasy possession with intent to sell or deliver
- Prescription drug crime charges
- Federal and major felony drug trafficking
- Possession of marijuana
- Possession of methamphetamines
- Cocaine possession
- Heroin possession
- Drug cultivation and manufacture
- Drug distribution and sale
- Illegal distribution of medical marijuana
- Drug charges pre-file investigation
- Ecstasy possession
- Drug trafficking
- Marijuana possession with intent to sell or deliver
- Meth possession with intent to sell or deliver
- Cocaine possession with intent to sell or deliver
Sentences for drug charges in Michigan
The consequences of a conviction for Michigan drug charges are what give the state its reputation for harsh drug laws. A person convicted for drug offenses in the state may be facing minimum jail terms of a few months to a maximum of life in prison.
This may also include fines ranging from thousands of dollars, even up to maximum fines of one million dollars. The consequences, according to each of the major offense categories may include:
Drug Possession offenses
Possession may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. Punishments ranges as follows:
- Possession of schedule I or II substances:
- Maximum of life in prison and fines up to $1,000,000 if the substance amount is 1,000 grams or more
- Maximum 30 years plus fines up to $500,000 for possession of 450 to 1,000 grams
- Maximum 20 years and a fine up to $250,000 for possession of 50 to 450 grams
- Maximum of 4 years plus fines up to $25,000 for possession of less than 50 grams
- Possession of ecstasy or methamphetamine in any amount may attract up to 10 years in jail and up to $15,000 in fines.
- For repeat possession or distribution of a schedule I or II substance in a quantity greater than 50 grams, the punishment could mean a sentence of life in prison.
Drug Distribution offenses
Just like possession offenses, manufacturing may be charged as a high-court misdemeanor or felony.
- For manufacture of schedule I or II substances, punishment includes:
- Maximum of life in prison and fines up to $1,000,000 for amounts of 1,000 grams or more.
- Up to 30 years’ jail time and fines of $250,000 for 450 to 1,000 grams.
- 20 years’ maximum jail time and fines up to $250,000 for 50 to 450 grams.
- Up to 20 years’ imprisonment and a fine of up to $25,000 for less than 50 grams.
- For manufacture of non-narcotic schedule I, II or III substances, the punishment is up to 7 years in prison plus fines of up to $10,000.
- Manufacture of schedule V substances attracts up to 2 years jail and fines up to $2,000.
Drug Manufacturing/cultivation offenses
The severity of consequences for these offenses generally depends on the type and quantity of drugs involved. It also depends on the location where drugs were distributed, such as a playground, interstate roads, etc.
- Mandatory life sentences for repeat offenders convicted of distributing more than 50 grams of a schedule I or II substance.
- Fines up to $1,000,000
Defeating your Detroit drug crimes charge
Although drug crimes are some of the most serious offenses around, a skilled Detroit Criminal Defense attorney can help you get the charges dropped or possibly dismissed.
The Bennett Law Firm, PLC, has made a name for itself by being extremely compassionate to their client’s needs. By using a variety of tactics and legal defenses, Attorney Samuel Bennett has helped several clients through their serious case and get back to their lives.
Our legal team knows what it takes to achieve the best possible result in felony and misdemeanor cases. Some of the tactics we have used in cases involving all types of cases involving the most serious controlled substances include:
- Challenging insufficient evidence: This is a legal defense tactic we have used in several cases. All drug offenses have elements that the state must prove to secure a conviction. The standard required by law for proof of these elements is proof beyond a reasonable doubt. We can challenge the state’s evidence on several grounds to show insufficient evidence and a lack of proof.
- Disproving constructive possession: In some instances, you may be arrested for possession of a drug which is not physically on you. When you are arrested and charged in these circumstances, the state must prove that you knew the drugs were where the police found them. We can argue to disprove this knowledge, as well as showing that you had no ability to exercise or maintain control over the drugs.
- Challenging illegal search and seizure: Before you can be stopped and searched by the police, there must be probable cause. If you were arrested based on an illegal search, we can insist that your Fourth Amendment rights have been violated.
- Prescription defense: This is an absolute defense to a drug possession charge. If you have a legal prescription for the drugs found in your we can assert this defense on your behalf.
- Temporary possession: Where you had only temporary possession of the drug, we can assert that you never had permanent control of the drug. For example, if a friend asked you to help them keep a bag for a few hours and you were found in possession, this defense can be argued on your behalf.
Depending on the specific circumstances of your case, any one or more of these defenses may be employed to get your drug charge resolved in your favor.
It is however imperative that you get in contact with a Detroit drug crimes attorney immediately you are arrested. Do not wait until you are charged as every moment of delay detracts from valuable time that could be spent preparing your defense.
Tips on How to find and hire a Criminal Defense Lawyer to help you with your drug crimes charge
If you have been arrested on drug crimes charges but are unsure of how to go about finding and hiring a qualified attorney, this guide will help you. To give yourself the best shot at overcoming the charge against you, it is necessary that you commit to finding a dedicated and compassionate attorney to represent you.
- Finding a drug crimes lawyer: You have several means of finding a criminal defense attorney in Metro Detroit. First, you can get referrals from your friends, family, and co-workers.
Second, you can go online and search “Detroit Drug Crimes Attorney” or “Detroit Criminal Defense Attorneys” which will bring up a list of defense attorneys in your area.
TIP: When reviewing a possible criminal defense attorney online make sure to read over some of their past client reviews. These reviews can give you great insight into how they might handle your case and how they may guide you through the court process.
- Preparing to meet with a defense lawyer: Ideally, you should not decide on a lawyer without meeting 2 to 3 other attorneys. To make the most of your meeting, you should ideally take along any paperwork you have from the court detailing the charge against you and any other paperwork the police gave you. Also, try to make a list of qualities that you would like to meet in your attorney.
- Qualities to look out for: Ideally, you want your criminal defense attorney to have experience representing clients with similar drug charges. They should have a solid strategy for handling your case that you believe will get you positive results. Your attorney should be a good communicator and be able to give you sound legal advice, as well as want the best for you – not their bottom line.
- Hiring your attorney: Once the meetings are done, look back on the prospects and assess those that have the qualities you want. Think about whether they have reasonable legal fees and if you are comfortable with them. Above all, think about whether you are confident in their abilities to help you fight the charge against you.
On Average, How much Will a Defense Attorney Charge Me to Defend Me Against a Drug Charge
You should know that defending a drug crime charge is rarely an inexpensive process, compared to other criminal related offense charges. In addition to the fines that may be imposed, you will have to defray many court-related expenses as well.
Metro Detroit drug crimes attorney costs will typically vary depending on a variety of factors. These may include the severity of the charges against you, the complexity of legal issues involved in the case, whether the case goes to trial, and any aggravating factors.
The Bennett Law Firm, P.L.C., will set a flat-rate attorney fee with no hidden charges. We strive to help our clients get through a difficult time in their life.
What you gain by hiring The Bennett Law Firm to represent you
When you contact The Bennett Law Firm, PLC, we will immediately begin to prepare your defense and help set up a plan to attack the prosecutor’s case.
Amongst the steps we will take include:
- Scrutiny of your arrest: Since we are very conscious of protecting the rights of our clients, one of our first steps will be to see if the arrest violated your rights.
- Dismissal of charges: If your rights were violated, we will immediately help you assert these rights. We will be on the lookout for other areas where the appropriate procedure was not followed such as in the collection of evidence.
- Possibility of a plea: In deserving circumstances, we will help you consider the possibility of a plea. You can rest assured that we will be working to get you the lowest possible charges and the least punishment possible.
- Staunch legal defense: Where the matter must proceed to trial, you can rest easy knowing that you have a proven trial lawyer on your side in Samuel Benneth. We will fight aggressively to ensure that you receive the best possible results.
- Compassion: Your case isn’t just a number to us. We will listen to you and your concerns, all while providing effective representation.